WELCOME: Dr. Syed Haque to Great Lakes Labs

Posted By: Michelle Volk on 8/18/2017 | welcomewelcome


We are pleased to welcome aboard Dr. Syed Haque, our new Laboratory Director.

Dr. Haque is a Fellow of the Academy of Clinical Biochemistry and is Board Certified in Clinical Chemistry.  Prior to coming to Great Lakes Labs, he served as a research associate and professor of Medicine at the Feinberg School, Northwestern University, Illinois.  He has authored many works in the medical community and will be a great asset to our scientific team. We look forward to having his presence and expertise here at Great Lakes Labs.

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Are Quaaludes (Methaqualone) Back?

Posted By: Michelle Volk on 8/18/2017 | Methaqualone

Due to the publicity given to Methaqualone during the Bill Cosby sexual assault trial, customers are asking if this is a drug that has reentered the market.  According to the Drug Enforcement Administration, “Over the last several years, there have been very sporadic seizures of Quaaludes throughout the country,” per Eduardo Chavez, DEA special agent.

The DEA is reluctant to confirm or deny any unilateral statement whether or not the drug has gained ground in the illegal market. The reason being, local law enforcement’s potential to encounter Quaaludes does not get directly reported to the federal agency. 

Quaaludes are still one of the most widely abused drugs in South Africa, according to reports.


*The image above is an original ad for Quaaludes. Recreational use of the drug gained popularity in the 1970s and it was made a Schedule I drug in the United States in 1984. Quaaludes have reentered public discussion since revelations that Bill Cosby allegedly raped women after providing them with the drug.

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Is this a Typo: MariHuana vs MariJuana

Posted By: Michelle Volk on 8/18/2017 | marijuana

Time and time again we have individuals calling the laboratory and informing us that we have misspelled Marihuna (Marijuana).  The most common way is noted with the “j”.  However, the legal and scientific spelling is an “h”.  This legal spelling dates to the 1937 Marihuana Tax Act in which the word is spelled with an “h” and hence became part of the common American spelling. While no one knows exactly why the spelling was changed, it is rumored that it was spelled with a “j” in order to make it sound more “dangerous” in the efforts to prevent people from its use. The hard pronunciation (and origin) of the word in Spanish, to someone just seemed to make it more fitting. Others believe it is because Americans began to adopt many of the Mexican derived words.

Depending on what you are reading or what law you reference in the United States Legal Codes relating to Marihuana, the spelling appears interchangeably. As a result you will often see marihuana (marijuana) spelled two ways.

For more information check out the article written in the Washington post in 2016:
'Marijuana' or 'marihuana'? It's all weed to the DE article

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Opioid Epidemic Stakeholders Meeting

Posted By: Kyle Hovanec on 8/18/2017 | Porter CountyPorter Countyopoids

This past week, Dr. Maria Stamp, Porter County Health Officer called upon agencies within our county to address, determine and establish guidelines moving forward on a multi-dimensional approach to curbing Opioid abuse. 
Michelle Volk, Great Lakes Labs CEO was fortunate to be able to participate in this roundtable forum.  Stakeholders included the Coroner Harris, Sheriff Reynolds, Judge Jent, Prosecutor Gensel, Pharmacist  Jim Spanopoulos, Chris Buyer, Chief Juvenile Probation, Laura Sutton, Adult Probation, Dr. Timothy Hamburg,Porter Regional ER, Elaine Merkel, Porter Regional Neonatal Unit, Scott Arnold, Valparaiso EMS, Portage Fire Department, Carmen Arlt, Porter Starke Services and representatives from Indiana Department of Public Health.
Michelle stated “a tremendous amount of work and collaboration has already been shown throughout Porter County, however, more needs to be done.  Our goal and mandate as citizens to each other should be to ramp up efforts of communication, collaboration, and cooperation.  Our next steps as a group are to determine where we go from here.”

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Indiana Facts

Posted By: Michelle Volk on 7/18/2017 | Indiana facts

According to the Alliance for a Healthier Indiana, tobacco is the leading cause of preventable death in the Hoosier state. 
US News & World Report found that Indiana’s government compared to the other states is the most effective in our country.  As Governor Holcomb stated in the May/June Building Indiana publication, “Folks around the nation are already learning just how much further their dollar goes here in Indiana…”

Do you know where Indiana ranks?

#7 in high school graduation rate
#16 in college readiness
#27 overall

Crime & Corrections
#1 in low prison overpopulation
#10 equality in juvenile jailing

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Marijuana Look Alikes: Can YOU Tell the Difference?

Posted By: Michelle Volk on 7/18/2017 | ediblesmarijuana

Below you will find pictures of substances can you tell which one is the illicit drug?  If you cannot tell, do you think young children will be able to? Marijuana edibles are on the rise and so are emergency room visits, especially in states where edibles are legal. Young children think they are consuming a food product and the results are catastrophic.

So many people feel marijuana are not harmful because they “smoked it” when they were kids. When something is smoked, an almost immediate effect can be felt. Yet when someone consumes an edible marijuana food product, they have to wait on digestion to take place. So the effects may come several hours later. Teens who are looking for a quick high tend to overdose because they end up consuming 4-5 times the serving size listed on packaging. They eat more because they feel it is not working or that it is food and is “safe”.

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Why Lab Based Testing? Why instant Testing? Is One Really Better?

Posted By: Michelle Volk on 7/18/2017 | lab testinginstant testing

Every time our sales team speaks with an agency, the question comes up about the differences between lab based analysis and instant testing. Since Great Lakes Labs is a provider of both types of testing, we thought we would highlight a few of the differences for you in this easy to read chart.

*Great Lakes Labs has drug testing solutions for every budget. Our extensive compliment of drug testing options allows us to customize a plan that works best for your agency’s needs.

Both lab based and instant testing have their place, but when it comes to being legally defensible and the ability to provide sound expert witness, lab based analysis is the choice every time!
Whether you are new to GLL services or an existing customer, we have an open door policy that allows you to review your drug testing options. Contact our sales team today to discuss your drug screening program.  1-888-464-8885

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Drunk But You Didn’t Drink

Posted By: Michelle Volk on 7/18/2017 | Auto Brewery SyndromeAuto Brewery Syndrome

Endogenous ethanol production, otherwise known as Auto Brewery Syndrome or gut fermentation is a rare circumstance which allows alcohol to be fermented in the body; specifically the stomach and intestines.
This phenomenon occurs in individuals that have an abundance of yeast inside the intestines.  Yeast can build up to the point where introduction of any sugar into the body can cause a reaction that rivals drinking excessively. 
If an individual consumes the slightest amount of carbohydrate, the body will convert this sugar into ethanol causing a spike in the blood alcohol.
This syndrome is extremely rare and one of the only ways to get an accurate diagnosis involves a complex testing regimen under very strict and controlled environmental conditions.

Research is ongoing about this syndrome. If you are interested in learning more, please contact a medical professional or family doctor. 

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Summer Savings Corner: Introducing Instant LSD Dip Cards

Posted By: Michelle Volk on 6/15/2017 | LSD, dip cards

LSD seems to be making its way back into the drug circuit.  In the past, lab based testing was the only method of analysis. Today, LSD can be preliminarily tested through an instant dip card. 

We also offer LSD confirmation. (Please note that LSD is light sensitive. It degrades rapidly when exposed to light. After the collection is  performed, immediately seal it and cover the cup with aluminum foil.)

To order LSD instant test kits or LSD lab based confirmation please contact the sales team at or 1-888-464-8885

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